From a city that never sleeps, New York has been silenced by the pandemic that is COVID19. The once busy city defined by an omnipresent crowd and people always buzzing around, this pandemic has put this city to sleep.


With the future still uncertain, the arts and entertainment industry have suffered one of their most significant losses of all time. Theaters closed curtains, cinemas are empty, and museums have become “people-less,” all because COVID19 has forced them to stay in their homes. New Tork is a world of cultures and a cultural mecca of the arts and the entertainment industry.


All the big names are here from the Carnegie Cellar, Madison Square Garden, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Museum of Modern art, New York Fashion Week, New York Review of Books – all these are forced to closed doors because of the pandemic.


The entertainment industry is a big thing in the city, with Broadway providing 96,900 jobs and $14.7 billion to the city’s economy last 2019. The film, TV, theater, music, advertising, publishing, and digital content provided 305.000 jobs and put around 104 billion dollars to the New York economy, according to the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment.


So, what will happen to these forms of arts? Will it slowly wither away? Or will it adapt to the change of times?


It seems like no pandemic can stop these expressions of creativity as different arts, and entertainment outlets have already started experimenting on the “new normal.”


One such story is that of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. When the Mayor of New York declared a state of emergency last March 16, Ailey posted an 87-second video on Instagram, and it showed some of the company members dancing a portion of the “I Been Buked” from one of the company’s mainstay “Revelations.”


The dancers performed it in their element – from their cramped apartments, in a cramped backyard with three curious dogs looking at their humans dancing in a small balcony, in an alley – despite the lack of professionalism, it was still Revelations.


Being able to communicate the same message and feels on a different platform has made Ailey a model of evolution and adaptation. They are now streaming performances in Ailey All-Access.

Another inspiring evolution is the short film Mama Got a Cough by Jordan E. Cooper. The short film in Zoom calls an entire family convinced by their mother to go to the hospital. It was released on Youtube last May 18.


The 15-minute short film that stars Danielle Brooks and Da’Vine Joy Randolph are filled with light content that gives you some pleasurable laughs of how life has been during a pandemic.
Aside from arts organizations, television has also been adjusting. Late-night shows have started to evolve as well – from production staffers to family production and rooms being converted to makeshift sets.


Two months in and “corona productions” have seen a lot more Airpods, light ring eyes, and green screens. TV audiences have seen how the industry has tried to adapt their way to the current situation.

This situation has made artists realize the importance of each crew’s functions. They’ve also learned to improvise a lot to make it work.


If there’s one thing these stories tell us, it’s that the arts and entertainment industry in New York is here to stay. It might take some time; it might be on a different platform, and it might evolve into something else, but arts will always be arts – and no pandemic can stop that.

Author: Blogger